Politics and Business

When I lived in Germany, I had the privilege of working in a public Montessori school as a teacher of English language. Upon signing my contract, I was asked to check boxes regarding my tax status. There I encountered a line item that was utterly unfamiliar to me. Which religion would I be sending a portion of my taxes to? I was asked to check a box. Catholic, Protestant or “other.”

Moreover, when it came to the point when my preschooler was to enter preschool, I would choose from the two dominant religious affiliations for her preschool and elementary education, which were funded by these taxes– or else go to a state-funded school, for the “others” who didn’t affiliate with the two religions.

This shocked me to my core. I was raised in the United States– we don’t pay taxes to a government mandated religious institution. We practice separation of Church and State. I didn’t realize how fundamental this founding tenet was in my understanding of how the world worked, until I was asked to check a box.

Here’s a question that relates to small business owners: like this instance of conflagration of Church and State, should business and personal politics ultimately be kept separate? As a business owner, would I be alienating “others” when my ideology becomes too narrow for my clientele? Or is my business intended for political expression? Does taking a stand help my brand, or hurt my brand? What does my demographic think? Am I clear about the potential benefits and/or disadvantages of mixing politics and business?

I think examining these questions is an important aspect of doing business today. I’d love to hear what you think. Drop me a line, and let’s analyze your demographic’s needs and check to see if your messaging is in sync with your clientele.

Stay Green

Your product might change, your services might change, and even your branding might undergo some changes, but it’s important to the longevity of your business to be able to craft content that has staying power.

Creating messaging that feels relevant for a long time isn’t rocket science, but it takes a steady hand. You want messaging that reaches a large audience, is relatable, but also relevant. A term that gets thrown around in branding and design is “evergreen.”

How do you stay green? Ironically, it’s by keeping tabs with what is going on. Making tweaks when necessary (COVID’s mask requirements have been a game changer in 2020), and looking at what your demographic is up to– and reacting to it.

But you have got to have strong roots. A narrative that tells your business’s story is absolutely crucial to all of your messaging. By staying true to your narrative– the story of your business and brand– you can retain the clients you’ve won over from the start, even while your business blossoms.

Drop me a line to find ways to innovate and be true to your brand. I look forward to talking with you.